This blog is the second in a series of four posts on Sustainability Month 2021.
King’s Sustainability hosted our first-ever Sustainability Hackathon!
Hackathons provide an opportunity for a group to work together to discuss and develop real solutions to a problem.
We presented 4 sustainability challenges we want to tackle at King’s and attendees contributed thoughtful and insightful ways forward:
- How can we further support diversity within the field of sustainability (from the education of school pupils, college and university life and into careers)?
- Elevate and highlight sustainability role models from a diverse range of backgrounds.
- Recognize and discuss the interconnected roots of the climate crisis and racial and social oppression.
- Move beyond the over-individualistic approach to sustainability that is largely inaccessible for many, by meeting people where they are and widening the range of ways people can get involved.
- Seek to better understand and remove the barriers facing different people from getting involved in sustainability.
- What should an online open-access sustainability-focused Keats module at King’s look like?
- Make this module part of King’s Experience Awards or offer credit so that the module adds value to students’ educational experience.
- Create an interactive module with optional levels of engagement.
- Ensure the module includes relevant topics for students across faculties – why should students be interested?
- How can King’s Sustainability improve its communications to engage more students?
- Better communicate what King’s is already doing and achieving.
- Connect to students by relating sustainability to their area of study and creating easy-to-digest and engaging content.
- Invite students and staff to share their sustainability stories.
- Run campaigns, competitions and giveaways to incentivize more students to engage with sustainability.
- How can King’s encourage students to have more conversations about sustainability?
- Create an environmental series of Campus Conversations, a podcast or a seminar series, open to all and covering a range of topics within sustainability.
- Host community get-togethers for discussion and debate around specific topics – “Sustainability Socials.”
- Collaborate with societies and other parts of King’s to embed sustainability in campaigns and initiatives.
Do you have any thoughts, ideas or solutions about how to tackle these challenges? Let us know!
CLIMATE ACTION PANEL
On the 26th of February, we hosted the King’s Climate Education Panel. Climate Education has been a popular topic at King’s for a while – the KCL Climate Action Society has been running an education campaign, the King’s 100 discussed it last year, and the Climate Action Network has dedicated the Students & Education sub-group to the issue.
This panel was a chance to hear from the experts. Our panel was made up of Professor Adam Fagan, Professor of European Politics and Vice-Dean (Education) in SSPP, Dr Kate Greer, Research Associate in the School of Education, Communication and Society, Sigrið Leivsdottir, President of KCL Climate Action Society and Taimi Vilkko, Vice-President and Treasurer of the KCL Climate Action Society.
We covered a range of interesting issues during the session: the need to go beyond teaching just knowledge about climate change and instead also teach how to take action and live with climate change, supporting staff if they are asked to embed climate into their programmes, and that we may not need everyone to be on board just yet as long as we have a group of dedicated leaders and followers. There were also a few ideas on actions King’s can take right now, such as reaffirming our commitments to climate change, and even influencing higher education policy on climate teaching as we move towards hosting COP26 in the UK later this year.
The Students & Education group of the King’s Climate Action Network is excited to potentially take some of these suggestions forward and propose them for the King’s Climate Action Strategy.
Recordings of the events can now be found on our Kaltura.